All stories by Clare Brennan on BroadwayStars

Sunday, January 23, 2022

Jean-Daniel Broussé: (le) Pain review – baker’s son gets a rise in this playful, affecting mime by Clare Brennan

The Place, LondonBroussé brings a tale of baking and suffering to glorious life in this much-kneeded autobiographical show The title of Jean-Daniel Broussé’s solo show is a pun on the Fr…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 07:48AM
Sunday, January 16, 2022

Wendy & Peter Pan review – Wendy finds her way in a boy-shaped world by Clare Brennan

Leeds PlayhouseDeveloped between teams in Leeds and Tokyo, this spectacular reimagining brings new complexity to JM Barrie’s story Ella Hickson’s adaptation of JM Barrie’s world-famous…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 11:33AM
Sunday, December 19, 2021

The Play What I Wrote review – Morecambe and Wise homage brings us sunshine by Clare Brennan

Birmingham Rep This 20-year-old comedy with the nightly surprise guest works its magic in a superb revival directed by its co-writer, the Rep’s artistic director, Sean Foley As the title s…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 10:42AM
Sunday, December 12, 2021

A Chorus Line review – a timely revival of the 70s musical by Clare Brennan

Curve, LeicesterThe 70s musical centred on a group of Broadway musical auditionees is all about the ensemble in Nikolai Foster’s winning revival It’s not difficult to see why Nikolai Fos…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 07:24AM
Sunday, December 5, 2021

From a joyous Mancunian Wiz to the most charming of Beasts – the best Christmas family shows by Clare Brennan

Hull Truck; Hope Mill, Manchester; Barn, Cirencester; New Vic, Newcastle-under-Lyme; Watermill, NewburyThe Railway Children reduces our critic to tears, and a topical take on The Wizard of O…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 06:36AM
Sunday, November 21, 2021

My Voice Was Heard But It Was Ignored – vital voices on racism by Clare Brennan

Leeds Playhouse and touringThe arrest of a man outside a shop provides the framework for a dramatic investigation of black people’s experiences Nana-Kofi Kufuor’s new two-hander opens wi…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 12:18PM
Sunday, November 7, 2021

Life Is a Dream review – an existential celebration to die for by Clare Brennan

Royal Lyceum theatre, EdinburghWils Wilson delivers a high-energy version of the 17th-century play about a monstrous prince faced with the ultimate question Edinburgh’s Lyceum has reopened…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 07:12AM
Sunday, October 31, 2021

Jitney review – August Wilson’s cab drivers do the talking by Clare Brennan

Leeds PlayhouseA strong cast and the world-weary Pittsburgh cab drivers they portray are all battling circumstances beyond their control in this overly busy production of Wilson’s 1982 pla…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 07:24AM
Sunday, October 24, 2021

The Lemon Table review – love and death with Julian Barnes by Clare Brennan

Salisbury Playhouse and touringIan McDiarmid wryly contemplates mortality in his engaging new adaptation of two Julian Barnes short stories “Among the Chinese, the lemon is the symbol of d…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 06:48AM
Sunday, October 17, 2021

The Enemy review – Ibsen goes digital by Clare Brennan

Dundee RepA powerful overhaul of An Enemy of the People weaves texts and emails seamlessly into the action Kieran Hurley’s take on Henrik Ibsen’s An Enemy of the People was about to go i…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 06:36AM
Sunday, October 10, 2021

Dracula: The Untold Story review – gripping vampire tale with added bite by Clare Brennan

Leeds PlayhouseImitating the Dog’s technical marvel of a show turns an updated version of Bram Stoker’s novel into a live-action graphic novel New Year’s Eve; a police interrogation ro…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 09:12AM
Sunday, October 3, 2021

Typical Girls review – prison punks are too polite by Clare Brennan

Crucible Theatre, SheffieldClean Break theatre company and the Crucible join forces in Morgan Lloyd Malcolm’s worthwhile if underpowered play featuring the music of the Slits Typical Girls…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 08:36AM
Sunday, September 26, 2021

Missing Julie review – passion fights politics in laden Strindberg update by Clare Brennan

Theatr Clywd, MoldThe love triangle is gone, the wounds of war still raw in Kaite O’Reilly’s alternately intense and laboured adaptation set in Wales in 1921 Kaite O’Reilly’s new ada…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 08:12AM
Sunday, September 19, 2021

Mugabe, My Dad & Me review – a powerful personal tale of celebration and healing by Clare Brennan

York Theatre RoyalTonderai Munyevu’s semi-autographical show addresses Zimbabwe’s traumatic history with honesty and humour Clothes hang in broken rows above the bare stage (Nicolai Hart…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 08:42AM
Sunday, September 12, 2021

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof review – powerhouse performances by Clare Brennan

Curve, LeicesterAnthony Almeida’s staging is driven by Peter Forbes and Oliver Johnstone, magnificent in the roles of Big Daddy and Brick In this new production of Tennessee Williams’s P…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 07:54AM
Sunday, September 5, 2021

An Elephant in the Garden review – a tale that will never be forgotten by Clare Brennan

Barn theatre, CirencesterMichael Morpurgo’s story of a family fleeing Dresden in 1945 resonates today, animated by Alison Reid’s uncanny acting Michael Morpurgo’s 2010 story presents a…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 07:36AM
Sunday, August 29, 2021

Smoking Is Bad for You review – Chekhov with a breath of fresh air by Clare Brennan

Pitlochry Festival theatreAlan Watt is superb in an adaptation of two Chekhov short stories in this pioneering theatre’s fine new outdoor space Pitlochry Festival theatre has been much in …

SOURCE: The Guardian at 06:06AM
Sunday, August 22, 2021

Edinburgh theatre round-up: Medicine; Doppler; Screen 9; Burnt Out – review by Clare Brennan

Traverse 1, Edinburgh; Newhailes House and Gardens, Musselburgh; Pleasance; Assembly Roxy, EdinburghDomhnall Gleeson is outstanding in Enda Walsh’s revelatory new play about attitudes to m…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 10:18AM
Sunday, August 15, 2021

The Seagull review – powerfully atmospheric west of Ireland Chekhov by Clare Brennan

Coole Park, County GalwayDruid Theatre’s fine production of Thomas Kilroy’s adaptation finds rich resonance in the grounds of Lady Gregory’s Coole Park estate Druid Theatre Company is …

SOURCE: The Guardian at 06:48AM
Sunday, August 1, 2021

The Comedy of Errors review – a descent into farce by Clare Brennan

Lydia & Manfred Gorvy Garden theatre, Stratford-upon-AvonPhillip Breen’s RSC romp lacks a feel for Shakespeare’s text and fails its female characters – but this new open-air venue …

SOURCE: The Guardian at 07:36AM
Sunday, July 25, 2021

Gin Craze! review – raucous fun with a dark chaser by Clare Brennan

Royal & Derngate, NorthamptonApril De Angelis and Lucy Rivers bring 18th-century London to scabrous life in their boozy new musical satire with an excellent ensemble The opening number i…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 07:54AM
Sunday, July 11, 2021

Talent review – Victoria Wood’s first play comes home by Clare Brennan

Crucible, SheffieldWood’s trademarks are all in place in her talent-show debut drama, first performed at the Crucible in 1978, though it feels somewhat dated now The talents that made the …

SOURCE: The Guardian at 09:36AM
Sunday, July 4, 2021

As You Like It review – the setting is the star by Clare Brennan

Watermill, NewburyA green adaptation of Shakespeare’s romcom focuses on the climate crisis, but takes its time to get the blood stirring Duke Senior, banished by his usurping brother, prai…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 09:06AM
Sunday, June 27, 2021

The Jungle Book review – vivid adaptation takes best of book and film by Clare Brennan

Grosvenor Park Open Air theatre, ChesterNeither too Disney nor too Kipling, this witty staging also carries an ecological message Mowgli, Baloo, Bagheera – Kipling may have created them b…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 09:18AM
Saturday, June 19, 2021

Atalanta Forever review – she shoots, she scores! by Clare Brennan

Piece Hall, Halifax; now touringAmanda Whittington’s new play is a stirring account of a Yorkshire women’s football team playing on despite FA opposition in the 1920s The sky above the e…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 02:18PM
Saturday, June 12, 2021

The Girl Next Door review – Ayckbourn’s inventive time-bending comedy by Clare Brennan

Two sets of neighbours from 2020 and 1942 interact in an entertaining tale of love and endurance If the title leads you to expect hallmark Alan Ayckbourn split set and inventive staging, the…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 08:12AM
Sunday, June 6, 2021

Four Quartets review – Ralph Fiennes meets TS Eliot in a triumphant return by Clare Brennan

Theatre Royal Bath and touringThe actor and director gives a compelling performance of the poet’s wartime epic in this solo show What an achievement! Simply to recite TS Eliot’s 1943 poe…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 08:03AM
Sunday, May 30, 2021

A Russian Doll review – from St Petersburg with hate by Clare Brennan

Barn, CirencesterCat Goscovitch’s gripping play explores the Russian troll factory that used social media to manipulate the Brexit vote Manipulation of public opinion to political ends is …

SOURCE: The Guardian at 07:42AM
Sunday, May 23, 2021

The Greatest Play in the History of the World review – a face-to-face delight by Clare Brennan

Stephen Joseph theatre, ScarboroughJulie Hesmondhalgh recounts a tale of rediscovery and romance in a solo show perfect for live theatre’s return Somewhere in outer space, the Actor tells …

SOURCE: The Guardian at 06:03AM
Sunday, May 16, 2021

The Sorrows of Satan review – Faustian fun from a stately home by Clare Brennan

Available onlineBased on a fin-de-siecle novel loved by Oscar Wilde, this satanic stage musical has snappy songs and a devilish wit This light, witty, devilishly well delivered “play with …

SOURCE: The Guardian at 06:24AM
Sunday, May 2, 2021

Boland: Journey of a Poet review – a profound portrayal of Eavan Boland’s life by Clare Brennan

Mick Lally theatre, Galway; available onlineDrawing on her early writings, Colm Tóibín captures the essence of the late Irish poet in this transformative livestreamed production Eavan Bo…

SOURCE: The Guardian at 06:03AM

All that Chat

Sep 14, 2021: Chicago - Ambassador Theatre
Oct 17, 2021: Dana H. - Lyceum Theatre
Mar 28, 2022: Plaza Suite - Hudson Theatre
Apr 07, 2022: The Minutes - Studio 54
Apr 28, 2022: Macbeth - Lyceum Theatre